Maersk, a global integrator of container logistics, played a central role in the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to managing regular shipments, it needed to handle urgent, critical personal protective equipment (PPE) and medical supplies cargo assignments.

Maersk is a Danish global integrator of container logistics active in ocean and inland freight transportation and associated services, such as supply-chain management and port operation. Maersk has been the largest container shipping line and vessel operator in the world since 1996. The company is based in Copenhagen, Denmark, with subsidiaries and offices across 130 countries and around 80,220 employees worldwide in 2018.

Maersk is responsible for carrying 20% of global trade. With such enormous responsibility, it had to make decisions quickly. Maersk had to prioritize shipments and support customers’ changing requirements. Key was ensuring that shipments were in the right place at the right time to keep everything moving. The company, which was primarily office based, needed to transform rapidly to remote working to keep business moving. Being able to scale its working-from-home capability in days required help.

 

A remote working solution deployed in record time


Maersk had capacity for around 4,000 people to work remotely. It needed to scale that over 10-fold to 44,000 in weeks. To make this switch, Maersk called on the expertise of its trusted partner Orange Business Services to add network capacity and scale up its self-managed Cisco remote access VPN.

44,000
remote workforce
scaled up from
4,000 to 44,000 in
3 weeks

 

Maersk has learned the hard way how to be resilient in a crisis. The company made a major recovery from the NonPetya ransomware attack in 2017 that ground the company’s operations to a halt. As a result, it invested heavily in its cybersecurity and cloud collaboration technologies. This investment proved useful in the pandemic, allowing users to work from home while maintaining their connection to Maersk’s networks.

Due to lockdowns and social distancing, all upgrades had to be performed remotely. Orange and Maersk set up virtual teams working around the clock to meet the needs of its employees around the globe as the pandemic spread.



It is really important that we were able to support our customers as their needs changed and evolved during the pandemic – while the rest of the world had come to a stop.

 

Tim Ferguson, Head of User and Distributed Technology at Maersk

Orange was fundamental in keeping Maersk’s global supply chain running during this unprecedented crisis. By understanding how the logistics company’s business works, Orange helped Maersk respond quickly and proficiently. This has helped the company maintain trust with its customers, who are confident they know where their goods are and when they are going to arrive – despite global disruption.